Over the weekend Cahir and JK Bracken's Óg earned their place in the Tipperary Water County Under-21A Football Championship final while Moyne Templetuohy-Thurles Gaels booked their spot in the under-21B decider.
Tipperary Water County Under-21A
Football Championship Semi-Final
Cahir 5-13 Inane Rovers 1-5
Report by Michael Dundon
Three goals in the opening ten minutes sent Cahir on their way to the county under-21A football final as they saw off the challenge of Inane Rovers at Dr Morris Park in Thurles on Sunday morning.
The Roscrea lads were somewhat understrength going into the game and also disadvantaged by having played only one game in the North championship. Against a slick outfit like Cahir those shortcomings were greatly exposed.
Cahir were not without their concerns coming into the game. An impressive South final win on Friday night, apart from leaving little time for recovery, also saw them field without Tommy McDonagh, Pa Meehan and Conor Cashin all of whom shipped knocks in that game. While they were favourites to advance to meet JK Bracken's in the final, it was going to take something of a voyage of discovery to see how they would cope with the absentees and two games inside forty-eight hours.
In the event the newly-crowned South champions romped home. Sean Murphy’s goal inside a minute steadied the nerves. Alan O'Connor up followed with another after seven minutes and three minutes later Stephen Grogan slotted home number three - all three goals came from flowing movements out of their own defence as Cahir’s energy and flair pulled the Roscrea defence apart.
It wasn’t that Inane did not have their share of play, but Cahir’s clinical use of their’s had this game wrapped up at that early stage.
Inane Rovers, to their credit, never dropped their heads and continued to try to play good football, but they did not have the incisiveness in front of goal of their rivals and, in fact, the Roscrea lads failed to register from play over the hour.
Leading 3-1 to 0-1 after ten minutes Cahir continued to pile forward and they were rewarded when Alan O'Connor bagged his second and their fourth goal in the 25th minute after Stephen Grogan created the opening.
At half-time Cahir led 4-7 to 0-2 with Dara Tynan kicking both Inane points from frees.
Owen Tynan’s goal from a penalty for Inane Rovers in the 42nd minute had them trailing 1-3 to 4-9, but Cahir were never in danger of being reeled in. Sub David Fitzgerald marked his introduction with their fifth goal near the end.
This was an impressive showing from Cahir who, in full flight, were a delight to watch with their movement, handling and finishing all from the top drawer. They will take beating in the final, particularly if they have their full compliment of players. Christy McDonagh, Kevin Grogan, Stephen Grogan, Alan O Connor, Nicholas Reidy and Dillon Fitzgerald were their key men in this win.
Inane Rovers gave it everything and linked up well at times, but were out-classed by quality opponents. No one could fault them for endeavour with Dara Tynan, Gavin Meagher, Colm Treacy, Jack Lee , Fionn Ryan, Conor Booth, and Vlad Bodrov doing their utmost to advance their cause.
Cahir: Paddy Donovan Colin McInerney, Christy McDonagh, Dara Heffernan Nicholas Reidy, Owen Wise, Francie Delaney, Kevin Grogan, Ger Quinn (0-1), Jake Kiely, Stephen Grogan (1-1), Dillon Fitzgerald (0-3), Conor O'Brien (0-3), Alan O'Connor (2-1), Sean Murphy (1-1). Subs: (ht) Mark Casey for Quinn, (35th) Owen Heffernan for Kiely, (52nd) Killian Halpin for O'Donovan, (54th) Denis Clifford for K Grogan, (55th) David Fitzgerald (1-1) for S Grogan.
Inane Rovers: Brian Parlon, Luke Seacy, Gavin Meagher, Eoin Dooley, Aidan Booth, Colm Treacy, Jack Lee, Conor Booth, Dara Tynan (0-5, 0-5 frees), Shane Fletcher, Vlad Bodrov, Owen Tynan (1-0, 1-0 penalty), Dylan Hogan, Darragh Heffernan, Fionn Ryan. Subs: (42nd) Shane Treacy for Parlon, (56th) Parlon for Heffernan.
Referee: Patrick O'Mahoney (Kiladangan).
Tipperary Water County Under-21A
Football Championship Semi-Final
JK Bracken's Óg 2-8
Arravale Rovers 0-4
Report by Noel Dundon
Mid champions JK Bracken's Óg stormed through to the county under-21A football final with a fine victory over Arravale Rovers at Dundrum on Saturday afternoon.
Playing some great football - particularly in the first half when they laid the foundations to their victory - the JK Bracken's lads were never out-played in this clash and they controlled proceedings for long spells, despite the best efforts of the Tipperary town boys, who gave chase from gun to tape.
The Mid men were a more physically imposing side and they made their size count throughout the game as they burst through the Rovers players with greater ease than vice versa. And, they were also superior in the footballing stakes - their tenth minute goal from Neil Quinlan being ample evidence of their acumen with a multiplicity of players having been involved in the passing movement leading up to the final shot by the full-forward.
By that stage, having played wind-assisted, JK Brackens Óg had already opened up a decent lead with points from Neil Quinlan, Paddy Cadell (two) and Nick Keane giving them the advantage. It was an advantage they would need too because the breeze had a big impact on the game, blowing straight downfield from one goal to the next.
Arravale Rovers were on the back foot from the off and it took them until the 27th minute to register a score through Conal Donovan. By that stage Shane Doyle had added another point for JK Bracken's and by the time the half way break arrived, both sides had added another score apiece - Eanna McBride for the leaders and Cormac Maher with a fisted score for Arravale Rovers who could have had a goal in the 15th minute when a half chance for Dean Morrissey went abegging as he was falling over while attempting to shoot. A goal at that stage could have changed the complexion of the game, but it wasn't to be for Arravale and it didn't happen in the second half either.
Despite having the breeze at their backs, Arravale only managed the same number of scores in the second half as the first. And, by the time they got the first of those scores through Jack Hogan, the game was well and truly over as a contest.
JK Bracken's Óg laid down a marker immediately after the turnaround with a Lyndon Fairbrother score in the first minute. And, when Neil Quinlan fought his way through the Arravale rearguard in the seventh minute and fired home his and JK Bracken's second goal, it was game set and match to the Mid men.
Substitute Radek Natkaniec traded a point with Matthew Morrissey before the end, but JK Bracken's Óg had the game in the bag and were cruising towards the county final.
This was a very good, solid display from JK Brackens Óg and they will be well pleased with their application, their link-up play and the manner in which they put Arravale Rovers to the sword. They had key men in Tom Murphy, Paddy Cadell, Lyndon Fairbrother, Eanna McBride, Michael Egan, Shane Doyle and, of course, the two-goal hero Neil Quinlan.
JK Bracken's Óg will take a bit of stopping in the final.
Arravale Rovers never really got into this game and played second fiddle all the way - they will be disappointed with this, but will acknowledge too that they came up against a side firing on all cylinders. Best for Arravale on the day were Donagh hickey, Jack Lowry, Matthew Moroney, Cormac Maher and Oscar O'Dwyer.
JK Bracken's Óg: Kuba Beben, Tadhg Nolan, Michael Egan, Jack Prout, Lorcan Roche, Tom Murphy, Eanna McBride (0-1), Paddy Cadell (0-2), Lyndon Fairbrother (0-1), James Corcoran, David O'Shea, Shane Doyle (0-1), Conor Cadell, Neil Quinlan (2-1), Nick Keane (0-1). Subs: Radek Natkaniec (0-1) for Corcoran, Conor Sheedy for C Cadell, Aidan Coffey for McBride, Martin Bergin for Fairbrother, Ciaran Byrne for Nolan.
Arravale Rovers: Darren Hueston, Jake O'Dwyer, Jack Lowry, Conor Leahy, Fergus Halligan, Oscar O'Dwyer, Donagh Hickey, Johnny Ryan, Matthew Moroney (0-1), Dean Morrissey, Conor Donovan (0-1), Darren O'Dwyer, Killian Noonan, Jack Hogan (0-1), Cormac Maher (0-1). Subs: Daniel Kelly for D O'Dwyer, Michael Sharpe for Morrissey, Jordon Doyle for Noonan Timmy, Esmonde for Hogan.
Referee: Martin Doyle (Ardfinnan).
Tipperary Water County Under-21B
Football Championship Semi-Final
Moyne Templetouhy-Thurles Gaels 5-4
Knockavilla-Donaskeigh Kickhams 2-3
Report by Morgan Lanigan
The combination side laid seige to the West champions goal from the opening minute thanks to good play and a full-forward line which positioned itself in the right place to hit goals which won the game.
The absence of Ger Browne was the talk of the stand and Knockavilla’s hopes were further dented as Moyne Gaels' Conor Bowe and Gearoid O’Connor cut swathes through the Knockavilla defence. Their scores and assists helped put eleven points between the teams at the break.
Knockavilla could not settle and had to further rejig things after full-back Gavin McCormack had to go off injured. Had a few more played to captain Nathan Ryan’s standard this semi-final would have been a lot closer. They did win the second half when hitting two of three scores, but Philip Ryan was the top scored when hitting 2-1 with the goals materialising either side of half-time.
Right from the off Conor Bowe won the throw-in and drove at the Kickhams defence - his shot off the post fell to Philip Ryan and he pointed.
Knockavilla struggled, but their first attack saw Nathan Ryan kick a high raking effort in what were dry gusty conditions.
Shane Lowe was in fine form and he stopped danger man Devon Ryan from putting his stamp on the game.
The first goal arrived following a high ball across and Philip Ryan was in the right place to scor.
A Conor Bowe free was followed up by the second goal when Chris Muroe punched home.
Knockavilla did manage the next effort - a missed free fell to ground in the middle third and captain Curtis Ryan held possesion before finding the pass. The ball came to Conor Bowe who hit the bottom corner.
The response was swift: Michael McCormack won the kick out and when Joe Griffey’s shot was half blocked the ball looped towards goal where Daniel Lonergan was waiting to help it home. That would be as close as they got as Conor Bowe’s final point of the game came before he set up Gearoid O’Conor for a top corner finish.
The teams traded points before the half-time whistle - a Nathan Ryan point and a Damien Cantwell effort.
In the second half Nathan Ryan hit a free and one from play while good, disciplined defending from Moyne Gaels denied Knockavilla the goal-scoring opportunities that they required. There would, however, be two more goals before the final whistle. And, both were fortunate. Gearoid hit a high ball acorss and Philip Ryan was on hand to tap home a goal. Then a Knockavilla shot came back off the post and the retreating defense knocked the rebound back in for a goal.
Moyne Templetouhy-Thurles Gaels: Barry Ryan, Ciaran Llyod, Shane Lowe, Kieran Larkin, Jack Taylor, Diarmuid Leahy, Mark Ryan, Gearoid O’Connor, Curtis Ryan, Ben Ryan, Conor Bowe, Damien Cantwell, Chris Munroe, Sean Hayes, Philip Ryan. Subs: Dean Lawlor, Killian Ryan, Jack Keogh, Paudie Gleeson and Dylan Shaughnessy.
Knockavilla-Donaskeigh Kickhams: Declan Ryan, Shane Farrell, Gavin McCormack, Andrew Ronan, Lorcan Carr, Eoin McCormack, Eddie Daly, Kieran Breen, Nathan Ryan, Joe Griffey, Michael McCormack, Daniel Lonergan, Paudie Hickey, Devon Ryan, Turlough Breen. Subs: Joshua Browne, Conor O’Dwyer, Ger O’Dwyer, Kevin Fitzgerald, Barry McCarthy, Ben Ryan, Alan Butler, Conor Farrell, Jack Ryan, Cathal Carr.
Referee: Cathal Boyle.